It's another day in the video game industry, which means another group of talented people have lost their jobs. ArenaNet, developer of Guild Wars 2, confirmed that "staff cuts" were in progress "due to the cancellation of non-advertised projects". They say that "Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2 game services will not be affected, no future game content is canceled." Game: (so-called) good. Lives: less.
Kotaku spoke to sources suggesting that the company was facing financial difficulties, although we did not know the number of people involved. We do not yet know the number of people who were fired.
The layoffs come in the context of "a broader restructuring of NCSoft in the West," confirmed ArenaNet in a statement to PC Gamer. NCSoft is the parent company of ArenaNet.
As noted by Kotaku in its initial report, NCSoft shut down Carbine Studios, a developer of WildStar, last September, as well as personnel reduction projects for the Iron Tiger mobile studio. This makes sense in the light of their financial results announced earlier this week, where they reported a decline in personal computer revenues.
Kotaku's report also states that "about 400 people work at ArenaNet and have been working for a number of years on a number of non-advertised projects, according to someone familiar with the company's activities. However, said this person, the slow progress in development, combined with the lack of new games in 2018 and 2019, has resulted in financial tightening. "
I do not find these dismissals scandalous in the same way as Activision, which recently fired 800 people after boasting of "record results" in their last year of sales. Nevertheless, any assertion about the need for restructuring should go hand in hand with a reminder that the salaries of people in managerial positions in the company – particularly a conglomerate like NCSoft – could probably cover those of many employees at lower levels.
Like Jessica Price, one of ArenaNet's two employees shot personal tweets last year, Remarksleadership will "come out of there with golden parachutes, while workers will suffer."